Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Expensive Habits

I have an expensive habit.  No, I'm not hooked on drugs.  I don't stop at every starbucks for a $10 half-cup of coffee.  I even periodically shop at the Salvation Army, so I'm not a fashion or shopping snob.  I'm a triathlete.  

Today was my first run in...  well...  a long time (maybe a month).  I'm feeling much better (over my nasty cold), so I'm shooting to race in a 5k this weekend that I promised to do with a couple of friends.  Given that fact and that it's dropped in temperature significantly since I last ran, I had to find a set of winter running gear for Sunday.

I picked up a pair of Pearl iZUMi running gloves from Fleet Feet Sports in West Hartford for $30.  Then I ran over to Target and got a wind-breaker jacket for $24.99 and two long-sleeve moisture-wick shirts on clearance for $1.98 and $3.48 each (yay clearance rack!!).  I invested $60 today and I know there's plenty more to get simply for winter training, not to mention what I'll need come spring for the next triathlon season or what I'll pay this coming year in entry fees alone.

I decided I need to compile a list of my triathlon investments.  Are you ready to see how much a triathlon lifestyle is?  Starting from late May of this year through today: 

Gear:
Road Bike.......................................$300........Craigslist
Bike Helmet....................................$20..........Target
2x water bottles...............................$7............Wal-Mart
Triathlon shorts................................$70..........Newington Bike Shop
Headband & Bandanas....................$10..........Target
3x Moisture-wick sleeveless shirts....$15..........Target
Watch with timer.............................$12..........Target
Sunglasses......................................$19...........Target
Hex-Key Set (allen wrenches).........$7.............Lowe's
Bike Pump......................................$30...........Central Wheel
New Bike Tire................................$30...........Newington Bike Shop
Non-cotton running socks.................$15..........Dick's Sporting Goods
Moisture-wick running shorts...........$15..........Boston Running Co.
Headband.......................................$3.............Hartford Expo
Axics running shoes.........................$106.........Fleet Feet Sports
Running gloves................................$30...........Fleet Feet Sports
2x Moisture-wick long sleeve shirts...$6............Target
Wind-Breaker..................................$25..........Target
TOTAL:..........................................$750


Entry Fees:
USAT Membership..............$39
4x Spring Triathlon...............$100
Park City Oly.......................$108
Litchfield Oly.......................$103
Nancy's 5k...........................$18
South Park 5k.......................$20
Hartford Half Marathon........$55
TOTAL:...............................$443

GRAND TOTAL: $1193

Now, I will give myself the benefit that the initial costs are always greater.  Once you are set with the bike, got all the racing / training clothes, and gear, your continued costs are mainly the entry fees.  But given entry fees alone, in the upcoming year I plan on running a half marathon (~$50), a marathon (~$75), maybe another four sprint triathlons ($100), hopefully a couple Olys (~$200), and two half-Ironman (~$550), I'm looking at roughly $1000 in entry fees this coming year alone.  The following year is my ultimate goal of the Ironman which has an entry fee of roughly $600 as a single event.

At this point, while I fully support the idea of giving your business to local, privately owned shops (the local running or biking shop, etc), I have to admit that for most people, this sport requires cutting a LOT of corners and those shops can be a bit pricey.  So I have no problem checking out the clearance sections at Target, looking on Craigslist for used gear, or attempting for periods of time to see if you can get away without certain items.  I'm personally on a college student budget.  So this sport has sucked quite literally half of this past 6-7 month's savings.  I don't have a new, shiny bike, a wetsuit, clipless pedals, bike shoes, or even an official triathlon jersey, but I make it work.  I didn't believe it when I started, but as a convert I will pass along my personal stamp of approval.  It's true - this isn't just a sport, it's a lifestyle.

For my own financial sake, I hope I can get a job simply to support this habit.  haha

Ok, dinner time.  Ciao!!

1 comment:

CupCake said...

It is an expensive habit. I still have to get my winter running gear for this weekend as well (one of the many errands I will be running tomorrow). Keep an eye on your budget and you should be fine. If all else fails, my place is always hiring hahaha